Here at Clockpunk Studios, author websites are what we do. While we also do websites for publishers, magazines, and other businesses, we got our start building author websites, and—as authors ourselves—author websites remain our passion. That’s why we try to make sure that every author website we build is tailored to the needs of the author, and designed to help your readers and reflect your particular voice.
That said, over the years we’ve found that there are certain qualities that every author website needs in order to be successful. So here are a few things that your author website should have if you want to attract readers, sell books, and stand out in a crowded field:
- A Bibliography
Maybe it goes without saying, but your website should list the books and stories that you’ve published. Even your most devoted fans may not be aware of every book or story that you’ve put out, and more importantly, you want to make it as easy as possible for anyone who wants to find out more. If someone reads your latest novel and absolutely can’t get enough, you want to make it easy for them to find your back catalog without having to look at a bunch of different websites to track it down. Which leads us to…
- A Way To Buy Books
As an author, you want to attract readers and sell books. It may sound mercenary, but at the end of the day, it’s how you make your living. So when readers come to your website, you want to make it easy for them to make the leap from browsing to buying, whether that’s links to places where they can buy, or handy buttons that turn online purchasing into a one-click operation.
- Ways to Get in Touch
We live in an age of social media, which means that these days readers and fans experience a greater-than-ever access to their favorite writers and creators. What’s more, they’ve come to expect it. So your author website should also make it easy for readers to get in touch, whether that’s by following you on social media or through a contact page on the website itself.
- A Newsletter
That said, social media has its drawbacks, especially when it comes to alerting fans of new publications, giveaways, or other newsworthy items. Thanks to the algorithms that control social media, and to the variations in how people use it, chances are that whatever you post to Facebook or Twitter will only be seen by a handful of your followers. That means that readers need a more reliable way to know when you’ve got a new book coming out, or when there’s a contest they might want to get involved in. That’s where newsletters come in.
Up to now, we’ve been talking about front-end stuff. Things that readers can see on your website. But there’s one other thing that every good author website needs, and that’s back-end support to help make sure that everything is running smoothly. Maybe you can handle some things, like comment moderation, but when it comes to ensuring that plug-ins are up-to-date, chances are you’d rather put your site in the hands of the experts.
At Clockpunk Studios, we can help you with all these parts of your author website and a whole lot more. We’ve built a lot of them over the years, and so we know pretty well what works and what doesn’t, and we’re always happy to work with you to make sure that your website reflects your particular voice and personality, while still being the best author website it can be!